This week the Homesown stall will be back at SOFACOMA Market in South Oxford with lots of healthy plants and beautiful, local, seasonal flowers. Everything we grow is raised in peat free compost with an organic approach. No deliveries this weekend, but plants and flowers can be pre-ordered for pick up at the Market between 10.00 am and midday.
Deliveries are available from Tuesday, 23rd May within 5 miles of Oxford and a minimum order of £10.
Email any orders and queries to: firstname.lastname@example.org
The tulips are over, but the ranunculus are flowering in a range of rich colours along with geums, astrantia and hesperis. Other cottage garden lovelies such as cornflowers, anemones, lupins and aquilegia will also be in the mix of this week’s bunches and bouquets along with the starry globes of alliums.
A jam jar of flowers: starts at £6.50
A pickle jar of flowers: £10
Market bunches: £10 – £15
A vase of gift wrapped flowers: starts at £20
For bespoke flowers, please email me.
The last week for tomato plants in case you have a space left.
Although the temperature has still been a little low some nights, it looks like the danger of frost has gone. The tomato plants have put on a lot of growth and have been hardened off – their first flowers are starting to appear. This is the best time to plant them. Then they will need regular watering and weekly feeds with either seaweed solution or tomato feed. All tomatoes enjoy sun and can be grown in the ground or in containers in a greenhouse or outdoors in a warm spot. All the varieties below are of the indeterminate kind which means they need support (tying into a support such as a bamboo cane) and to have their side shoots removed as they appear. This may seem a lot of bother, but it is worth it for the delicious taste of a home grown tomato.
Varieties – each £1.50 a 7cm/9cm/11cm pot & £2.00 for those in a 1 litre pot
Primabella: an excellent late variety cherry tomato which is suited to growing outside. It is blight resistant and keeps flowering late into the season. It also has a delicious flavour.
Cocktail Crush: an excellent UK bred, blight resistant tomato. It produces a heavy crop of cocktail sized tomatoes with a sweet flavour and an slightly acid tang. It is suitable for growing in unheated greenhouses, outdoors or in containers.
Sungold: an absolutely delicious yellow-orange cherry tomato which is very sweet. An all time favourite which can be grown inside under cover or outside.
Gardener’s Delight: another all time, favourite cherry tomato. Trouble-free and prolific with long trusses of richly-flavoured sweet red fruits, it is reliable and easy to grow.
Stupicke Polni Rane: is an early medium sized red tomato with a wonderful flavour. The potato-leaf plants bear large numbers of very sweet, 2 to 3-inch, deep red fruit. Originally from the Czech Republic, it does well both outdoors and in greenhouses (heated and unheated). It has good blight resistance which is particularly important if growing outdoors.
Black Russian: one of the very best flavoured tomatoes and perhaps my favourite of all (though it is impossible really to pick). It is a large tomato which can be grown in a greenhouse or outdoors. It produces large, ribbed, beefsteak tomatoes with deep red and purple skin and flesh which tastes superb. Highly recommended.
These are now big plants which are ready to be planted out.
Courgette Romanesco: a delicious courgette with excellent texture which never turns watery, even when quite large. A reliable variety which produces a generous number of courgettes. £1.50 for 9cm/11cm pot
Courgette Soleil: a golden yellow variety with excellent flavour. Pick when the fruit are quite small when they can be eaten either cooked or raw. £1.50
Hardy & Half Hardy Annuals
Cerinthe Major: a lovely unfussy plant which gently self seeds – once planted it will come back again and again. A pretty filler in the border and the vase, its purple bell-like flowers are a magnet for bees and other pollinators. It has attractive silver grey/green leaves which often have a blue wash. It flowers early and long and can grow up to 18 inches. Space plants between 9 & 12 ins apart. They enjoy sun, but do well in almost any position apart from deep shade. £1.25 a 7cm pot; 1.50 a 9cm pot
Nasturtium Black Velvet: a sumptuous, richly dark flowered nasturtium which is great for containers or towards the front of a border. This is a half hardy annual which has been hardened off, but does still protection from frost. It can grow up to 12 inches and has a slightly trailing habit. As well as being beautiful, it is also edible and its flowers and leaves make a delicious (and pretty) addition to salads. £1.25 a 7cm pot.
Cosmos Purity: Large, open flowers of pure white, with delicate apple-green foliage. The classic cut flower and a very lovely garden plant, which can grow up to 4′ and will keep flowering until the first frosts if picked or dead headed. It is a wonderful cut flower. £1.50 a 9cm pot
Cosmos Double Click Cranberries: a beautiful cherry coloured cosmos with ruffled petals. It can grow up to 3′ and will keep going until the first frosts. It enjoys sun. Might benefit from staking as gets taller. Cosmos offer a plentiful supply of nectar and pollen and are brilliant for a wildlife friendly garden. £1.50 a 9cm pot
Scabiosa Black Knight: a truly lovely plant which has very attractive lime green buds and glamorous rich dark burgundy flowers followed by amazing seed heads. It is an excellent cut flower as it is easy to grow and produces masses of flowers for cutting. This also makes it a great and reliable addition to a cottage garden. £1.25 a 7cm pot
A sample of some of the plants coming to market this week:
Geums: Mai Tai and Lady Strathleden: long flowering, clump-forming, herbaceous perennials which produce an abundance of upward and outward facing, flowers from late Spring to Autumn. Borne in branched sprays, they rise well above the healthy mound of deep green, slightly fuzzy leaves. Loved by pollinators and a wonderful bullet proof plant, it tolerates part shade and flourishes in the clay soil in my garden. £3.50 a 1 litre pot; £6.50 a 2 litre pot
Gaura Summer Breeze: delicate blooms open from pink buds into beautiful wafty spikes of beautiful 4-petalled flowers. Very attractive for cutting and also appreciated by bees, they flower abundantly the first year and continue over a long season. Despite their delicate appearance, Gaura are in fact very robust plants; they are particularly good in hot temperatures and are very drought resistant. They enjoy sun and a sheltered spot, but this variety is robust and suited to British weather. Grows up to around 3′ andneeds little care. Cut down in April.